Case Study - ALD Automotive Ltd.

Profile

Company Name: ALD Automotive Ltd.
Business Sector: Car Leasing and Finance House
Postal Address: Oakwood Park
Lodge Causeway
Fishponds
Bristol
Postcode: BS16 3JA
Fleet Size Overall: 94
HGV: 0
LGV: 0
Company Cars: 94
Private vehicles used for business purposes: 4

Company Overview

As the operational leasing and fleet management division of Société Générale, the ALD Automotive group is the second largest vehicle leasing operation in Europe and manages over one million vehicles across 40 countries worldwide (see below).

Established in the UK in 1958, ALD is focused on 4 key markets in an integrated business model: Business Services, Personal Contracts, Dealer Services and Manufacturer schemes and today manages a fleet of over 52,000 vehicles for major plc’s, small businesses and individual drivers alike offering a wider range of financing products :

For over 50 years, the company has been driven with a commitment to innovation and service excellence, and has developed a portfolio of award winning and proven products to meet the ever changing needs of a growing customer base.

Today, ALD Automotive is recognised as one of the industry’s leading service providers a view supported by the results of the Fleet CSI survey, widely regarded as the definitive customer satisfaction measure in the UK fleet market.

Formerly known as Landmark, the Fleet CSI survey is supported by both the BVRLA and ACFO and represents over 80% of the vehicle leasing and fleet management market and 94% of the 10 largest companies by volume.  Providing an insight into the views of fleet operators ALD Automotive is ranked No. 1 when benchmarked against the 10 largest leasing companies subscribing to the survey over the period 2007-2009.

ALD has always taken its corporate social responsibility seriously, considering the impact of its activities across all aspects of its operation, socially, economically and environmentally and, as evidence of this, ALD actively monitors its carbon footprint and gained the international standard ISO14001 standard in 2007.  Complementing Société Générale’s policy of Sustainable Development - and the bank’s commitment to gain carbon neutrality by 2012 - ALD is therefore involved in a detailed programme of carbon measurement, monitoring and reduction in key areas of energy, paper and travel utilisation. 

One example of this, relating to ALD’s road risk activities, is the offsetting of all business mileage via its CARbon offset programme, developed in 2006 in partnership with the UK’s leasing woodland conservation charity, the Woodland Trust. This unique and innovative scheme was launched externally to customers in the same year.

As a result of this almost 6,000 new trees have been planted to offset over 1300 tonnes of CO2 emitted by ALD’s drivers whilst driving on business. 

ALD actively seeks ways to reduce its year on year carbon footprint and is committed to reducing the average CO2 of its internal fleet which, at the end of 2009, was down to 143g/km ALD also encourages drivers to consider the necessity of their business journeys and to utilise suitable alternatives where appropriate; we also encourage video and tele-conferencing and car sharing across all our employees.

In 2008, the BlueFleet brand was launched across the ALD Automotive group; a collection of local and global initiatives designed to support customers in their efforts to meet their own environmental objectives. BlueFleet brings together a number of innovative solutions under one umbrella, and helps to highlight some practical areas where we can all make a positive impact on the environment.

The aims of BlueFleet are twofold: to help companies make informed decisions on how to reduce their company’s CO2 emissions from business travel by road - and, in doing so, commit to reducing global warming – in so doing the positive effect of this will be to reduce fleet operating costs.

  • CO2mmitting to reducing high emission cars
  • CO2mmitting to reducing fossil fuel consumption
  • CO2mmitting to reducing business travel by road and
  • CO2mmitting to offsetting residual emissions

Nature of Operation and Driving Activities

Whether providing companies with financial modeling or implementing an online fleet solution; creating a global fleet policy or looking after the needs of a private individual opting out of their car policy, ALD’s expertise and skill has enabled the business to successfully differentiate itself in a constantly changing environment with a focus on the following goals

Cost control and duty of care are the two principle issues facing corporate customers today and both are areas in which ALD has accumulated a huge amount of experience and expertise over the last 10 years. Health and safety has become such an increasingly important issue that managing company vehicles has become increasingly complex; a task made even more challenging with the need to manage business mileage in private vehicles too. In the event of an accident, failing to satisfy the legal system that an employer has taken their responsibilities seriously could result in their business being fined heavily or facing legal action from a third party.

In DriveSafe Solutions, however, ALD Automotive has created a straightforward, practical and cost effective solution to help establish a lasting risk reduction programme for all employees who drive on business.

  • Licence checks                                    
  • Driver profiling
  • Safety workshops
  • Driver training
  • Vehicle maintenance
  • Accident management
  • Journey profiling
  • Grey-fleet
  • Tyre safety
  • Road safety
  • Motor insurance

Daily rental ALD recognises that where employees drive on business:

  • in unroadworthy vehicles, whether company or privately owned
  • without a valid driving licence
  • with unsafe or illegal tyres
  • for long periods, without adequate breaks
  • without proper guidance or training, specific to their needs
  • with a high risk behavioural pattern
  • with an unacceptably poor accident history
  • without appropriate business insurance
  • without a clear understanding of their company’s Health and Safety culture
  • and without a comprehensive road safety policy in place

…both the company and its staff are at risk and ALD needs auditable records to show how it intends to prevent incidents occurring.

Work-related road safety isn’t merely about protection from prosecution, however, as morally, ALD has a duty of care towards its employees whilst driving on business. In today’s tough economic climate, too, ALD appreciates that a co-ordinated and properly structured work-related road safety programme will actually help cut operating costs.

Lower operating costs through improved driving techniques

  • Reduced risk of disruption caused by key employees losing their licence
  • Fewer accident claims to administer
  • Lower insurance premiums
  • Reduced car hire expense and administration
  • Reduced staff absences due to injury or work-related ill health
  • Improved staff morale and reduced stress
  • Enhanced corporate image
  • Reduced risk of prosecution

Externally, however, given that  so many companies were  confused by the whole area of risk - and having little resource or budget to effect a solution - ALD created a menu-driven suite of risk management services; an all encompassing, co-ordinated and cost effective proposition branded DriveSafe Solutions,.

Whilst detail on individual DriveSafe components such as licence checking, psychometric profiling and driver training is included in the section ‘Work Related Road Safety Policy & Procedures’ other optional modules such as CARRS (Car Allowance Road Risk Solution) and ProFleet2 (in-vehicle telematics) are other key components appreciated by many of ALD’s customers.

Within ALD’s own internal fleet, as our policy does not permit private cars to be used on business CARRS is not applicable and, with a 3-6 month replacement cycle neither is ProFleet2 feasible. However, for ALD’s customers, these two award winning solutions complement excellently the wide range of risk management initiatives ALD offer.

Car Allowance Road Risk Solution (CARRS)

Work-related road safety for company car drivers is clearly a key issue.  What’s often forgotten, however, is the essential need to protect an estimated 5 million employees who use their own cars on business; the ‘grey-fleet’. And, with legislation now being enforced more rigorously than ever before, and - with the ‘grey-fleet’ in its sights - companies urgently need to demonstrate a duty of care towards these employees.

CARRS provides a unique, practical and cost effective online solution covering:

  • Mileage reporting
  • Driving licence validation
  • MoT reminders
  • Driver and vehicle details
  • Service information
  • Road tax renewals
  • Insurance validation
  • Online reporting

Via ALD’s online fleet management portal, threesixty, CARRS manages key vehicle and driver data in a way that provides both protection for companies and their employees, generating reminders to ensure ongoing compliance with relevant legislation and offering ongoing peace of mind to all parties. And with a visible ‘traffic light’ alert system employers can quickly identify any imminent risk and take action.

ProFleet2 in-vehicle telematics: www.mycardetails.co.uk

To comply with legislation companies must demonstrate not only that they have implemented an occupational road risk policy, but that they pro-actively monitor the performance of work related road safety at regular and frequent intervals. DriveSafe’s ProFleet2 solution provides the ideal answer. Originally launched in 2004, as an integral part of ALD’s service offering, ProFleet2 has been installed in over 20,000 vehicles to date, benefiting companies throughout the UK with enhanced risk management tools, tighter cost control and reduced administration.

As well as ensuring drivers are automatically reminded of the need to service their vehicles on time, ProFleet2 also provides auditable management records of all key journey data, reducing the very real risk of prosecution. Online reporting highlights journeys undertaken where drivers have not taken  sufficient breaks, where employees drive for too long in any day, or at times of the day or night when fatigue-related accidents are more common. ProFleet2, therefore, provides, vital management control whilst safeguarding against potential driver fatigue:

  • complete audit trail of business journeys
  • auditable management control of occupational road risk
  • ensuring vehicles are roadworthy, reducing the risk of accidents
  • ensuring journeys include adequate breaks
  • highlighting driving at ‘high risk’ times where fatigue is more likely
  • identifying ‘high risk’ driving behaviour before it’s too late
  • custom alerts to remind drivers of weekly vehicle inspections, services, etc

As an optional upgrade fleet managers can also identify other aspects of potentially dangerous driving behaviour which might cause risk to their drivers or other road users e.g. heavy acceleration, heavy braking or excessive speeding. Such online reporting, alerting the Fleet Manager to high risk driving habits, is a pre-requisite of building an effective risk management strategy.

Utilising the expertise of specialist partners DriveSafe provides a comprehensive and co-ordinated risk management programme, with optional modules to suit specific needs, a complete solution for company car drivers and private car owners alike.

 

Organisational Structure

As a leading UK leasing company, the management of work related road safety is taken very seriously at all levels within the organisation, but is lead from the top of the organisation by our Managing Director Mr Keith Allen who comments:
“Proactive management of work related road risk is a key element of risk mitigation with regard to Corporate Manslaughter and the effective delivery of our duty of care to both our employees and others affected by our work activities.  The promotion of a safe driving culture has long been valued within ALD and is a principle we promote both internal and externally.  Becoming a Business Champion for Driving for Better Business is another opportunity for us to promote this message to a wider audience but also to learn from others who are innovative in this area and to continually improve our knowledge and processes in this arena”     

Work Related Road Safety Policy & Procedures

In an industry where customers expect best practice to be practiced internally by those suppliers who provide consultancy advice on all fleet-related matters it is, perhaps, not surprising to find that ALD’s own work related road safety policy and procedures are robust and comprehensive.

ALD is very aware of its responsibility to provide for the health, safety and welfare of its employees and others who may be affected by the company’s activities and places great emphasis on each employee adopting and maintaining a responsible attitude in regard to the well being of others.

With an estimated 20 fatalities and 250 serious injuries every week involving somebody at work, safe driving is a vital element in each individual’s ability to perform his or her particular job effectively and ALD looks to each employee to uphold the highest standards of driving and safety.

The company philosophy is that, irrespective of blame, most road accidents are preventable and all risks can be contained.  Consequently, ALD operates a policy of zero accident involvement.  As a vehicle user drivers are not only responsible for their own safety, but are also responsible for the safety of others who may be affected by their actions.  Therefore employees are required to operate their vehicle, at all times, in a manner that is safe, responsible and without accident.

ALD staff are reminded that company vehicles are a valuable item of business equipment which must be both available and maintained in a roadworthy condition at all times, and ALD looks to each employee to uphold the conditions of road-worthiness demanded by law. 

Even before the impact of the Corporate Manslaughter Act became clear,  ALD had always considered work related road safety to be an essential element of its corporate social responsibility and this is, therefore, completely integrated into our general approach to Health & Safety and environmental matters. 

A specific road related risk management policy is in place and the same DriveSafe solutions offered to our customers are applied internally, to ensure the proactive and efficient management of risk.

As a part of ALD’s remuneration package company cars are provided to eligible employees for both business use and private use but ALD’s duty of care is not restricted to its 94 company car drivers; it extends to all non-entitled employees who are occasionally called upon to drive on business use.

For both company car drivers and the grey-fleet alike, our objective is to reduce to a minimum, damage, injury or ill health that our employees and others might suffer whilst driving on work-related journeys and ALD aims to achieve this through a structured programme of risk assessment as well as ongoing awareness and training. 

Health & Safety / Car Policy
ALD’s policy covers all drivers of company vehicles, whether regular company car drivers, ad hoc company car drivers, or employees on company business driving their own cars. It is not intended to be ‘prescriptive’ but to provide guidance, information and advice, for both managers and employees.  The aim is to assist them, flexibly and sensibly to recognise, reduce and deal with the risks surrounding employees while travelling on ALD business as well as social and domestic driving.

Car Policy
All company cars are provided from an approved list of manufacturer models and are supplied new and replaced at 6 months or 10,000 miles whichever is sooner. This ensures both drivers and ALD benefit from the latest technological improvements and safety features developed  by the manufacturers,  that tyre tread depths are maintained at optimum safety levels and that minimal servicing is required.

Non company car drivers
Staff are only permitted to carry out work related tasks in vehicles approved and supplied by ALD, thereby avoiding the risk of any driver using their own personal car which might not necessarily conform to the safety standards required in relation to service history, tyre tread depths, insurance, etc.

Licence Checking

licencebureaulogo.gif“It is an offence to cause or permit another person to drive on a road a motor vehicle of any class if that person is not the holder of a licence authorising him to drive a motor vehicle of that class”. Road Traffic Act 1988 S.87 (2)

To comply with legislation ALD regularly checks each employee’s entitlement to drive, as well as spouses, partners or family members that are allowed to drive company vehicles. And whilst periodically checking licences can be a labour intensive process - as well as a practical challenge given the multitude of foreign and UK licence types and scenarios to consider - ALD uses the Licence Bureau to carry out this task, the UK’s leading provider of driving licence verification.

Sample LB MandateThe Licence Bureau then report back to ALD monthly and based on these results licences are re-checked automatically as follows:

  • Prior disqualifications and + 8 points – checked every 3 months
  • 4 – 8 points – checked every 6 months
  • 3 points or less – checked every 12 months

ALD Automotive has made a number of decisions regarding driving licence status, in order to control our occupational road risk as follows:

Allocated Company Car Driver

Regular licence checking based on risk rating highlighted above.

  • All drivers with >8 points will be asked to carry out and successfully complete in car driver coaching.
  • Any driving licence disqualifications will be dealt with on an individual basis, however, individuals should be aware that where driving is a critical element of their role, disqualification from driving could lead to dismissal.

Ad Hoc Company Car Drivers

  • Regular licence checking based on risk rating highlighted above.
  • Ad-hoc drivers with >8 points are not allowed to drive on business

Nominated Drivers

  • Regular licence checking based on risk rating highlighted above.
  • Any nominated driver with >8 points is not  allowed to drive a vehicle owned by ALD

Whilst licence checking was carried out internally before, ALD has been using the Licence Bureau to carry out licence validation since 2007 and our belief is that the increased focus given to this area has assisted us in reducing our risk significantly. Between 2008 and 2010 the percentage of our company car drivers with less than 4 points has increased by 2% to 98% and we now have no drivers with more than 7 points on their licence.  Utilising the Licence Bureau has made this process far tighter and much easier to facilitate and administer.  Should the need arise, the online tool also gives us an instant view of the whole population or any individual required.

Once ‘entitlement to drive’ is confirmed employees are then assessed through a process of psychometric profiling.

DriverMetrics FDRI

logo_cranfield.jpgPersonality-based, behavioural and emotional factors can seriously disrupt driver performance and are known to be a major contributor to road traffic accidents. These are compounded by situational factors which measure the amount and type of driving along with accident history, details of traffic convictions and other day to day factors. ALD, therefore, recognizes that understanding and measuring all these factors is the first step to predicting accident involvement.

Based on over 20 years of academic research into the psychology of driver behavior DriverMetrics provides ALD with a proven method of identifying ‘at risk’ drivers. Designed and developed at Cranfield University, the DriverMetrics FDRI (Fleet Driver Risk Index) is a unique online behavioural risk assessment specifically designed for occupational drivers. Aimed at identifying those drivers who are at greatest risk of an accident the FDRI reveals individual high risk behaviour patterns that cause risk on the road.

By highlighting the drivers most at risk the FDRI allows ALD to focus time on those employees where driver training intervention will have the greatest impact. More significantly, however, it also identifies the specific areas where that intervention should be targeted. The FDRI, therefore, is the foundation of an efficient process to managing our work related road risk.

Within ALD’s fleet of drivers c.30% were identified as ‘high risk’ and, as a result, they immediately undertook a one-day driver training course; this was subsequently extended to all business drivers, irrespective of their risk profile. Over 100 company car drivers completed the programme. Additionally, all other employees who carry out - or are likely to carry out - business journeys have completed either an online driver training session or have attended classroom sessions.

We have now completed two rounds of risk assessment utilising this process.  With an ongoing programme the difficulty comes in ensuring you retain the engagement of personnel on a continuing basis.  Therefore following our second round of risk assessments we decided to focus on our high mileage drivers (>40k miles pa) - 9% of our drivers (8 drivers).  All were invited to a specialist workshop which was devised and run internally; in addition they all completed   Econo-Drive in-car coaching. 

The balance of the high risk drivers, dependent on their previous training, either completed in-car coaching in the form of Econo-Drive or attended a relevant driving seminar.  Econo-Drive focuses on driving in a more economic and fuel efficient manner i.e. driving more smoothly and slower thereby addressing the twin issues of driver safety and the environment. 

Our driver training partner, Peak Performance, is currently developing a number of new interventions which we will implement throughout 2010 when we renew and review our risk assessment processes. 

Driver Training

Peak[2].logo.jpgAn integral element within our internal Occupational Road Risk policy is driver training, in partnership with Peak Performance, the UK’s leading provider of driver risk assessment, training and work related road safety solutions. Peak has a proven record in improving driver safety, reducing the cost and frequency of road accidents and increasing both personal well being and business performance. 

A range of effective training solutions is offered to ALD, all addressing the needs of both the individual and the company including risk assessment and outcome generated coaching, workshops and ‘better driving’ courses, some of which are listed below :

  • ‘DriverMetrics’ Personal Driver Coaching Course
  • ‘All of a Sudden…’  Driver Risk Awareness Workshop 
  • ‘Driving In Mind’  Driver Behaviour Workshop
  • Driving at Work Risk Management Workshops
  • Post Crash Interview Workshop
  • Econo-Drive Course
  • Personal Focus Course 
  • Professional Driver’s Course
  • UK Familiarisation Course
  • Vehicle Dynamics and Skid Prevention Course

The ‘Better Driving’ Courses provide a structured training process designed to improve a driver's ‘hands-on’ driving skills, awareness of risk and management of the driving environment, and are designed to deliver an enjoyable, interactive learning experience to achieve lasting benefits.

Underpinning these courses is the DriverMetrics Fleet Driver Risk Index, with coaching tailored to each individual’s specific personality type ensuring it is more effective, helping to deliver long lasting, positive changes in driver attitude and behaviour.

This process is then followed by a programme of ongoing measurement and monitoring as required. 

ALD takes driver training very seriously and we have carried out a blended programme of training over the last 5 years in support of our policies and personnel.  Over 80% of ALD’s staff have completed some form of driver training and 40% of our company car drivers have completed additional in-car coaching.  We invest between 4 – 6 % of our annual training budget solely on driver training and this is further evidence of ALD’s commitment to work related road safety.

Work Related Road Safety Guidance for Drivers

New Vehicle Handover

When an employee receives a new vehicle, a formal handover procedure takes place where practical to include:

The operation of all switches and location of the:

  • Horn
  • Windscreen wipers and the wash function
  • Lights including fog lights, hazard warning lights and internal light switches
  • In-car entertainment
  • Bonnet and boot release and the fuel filler cap release
  • Temperature controls
  • Mirror adjustment
  • Any other specific switches relevant to that particular vehicle
  • Warning lights and what they mean
  • The location of under bonnet components that require regular checking such as:
  • Oil
  • Windscreen washer fluid
  • The relevant tyre pressure for the vehicle 
  • Anti-lock Brakes

If no handover takes place, it is the drivers’ responsibility to ensure they are aware of the location of the items listed above, before they drive the vehicle.

Adjusting the seat and headrest

In an accident the driver’s head hitting the headrest causes most head and neck injuries.  If the headrest is in positioned incorrectly, this injury may be made more severe.  To help reduce injury, the headrest should be positioned so that support is given to the neck of the driver rather than the middle of the head. It is the driver’s responsibility to know how to adjust the driver seat and headrest (to include up/down if appropriate and back/forward) and to consult the manufacturers handbook supplied with the vehicle if they are unsure.

Fitness to Drive

It is the employee’s responsibility to ensure that they are fit to drive at all times and should never drive unless fit to do so.  They are in the best position to judge their own health, level of tiredness and other factors that may impair their driving.

The employee is responsible for ensuring that he/she holds the relevant licence for the vehicle that he/she is driving and ALD will check licences on an annual basis via the Licence Bureau or more frequently if required.

Any convictions and/or endorsements must be reported to the Company immediately.

Health Assessments will be carried out periodically by a qualified Occupational Health Nurse.  These “Fitness to Drive”  assessments are carried out bi-annually across our company car drivers.

Eyesight

ALD’s employees are responsible for ensuring that their vision is suitable for driving, and must have regular eye examinations to ensure they are able to satisfy the minimum eyesight requirements as set out in the Highway Code and all costs incurred may be claimed back from ALD. When glasses or contact lenses are required they must be worn whilst driving.

Alcohol and Drugs

ALD employees must never drive when there is alcohol in their bloodstream as even small amounts of alcohol will impair judgment and increase the chances of an employee being involved in an accident.  The company therefore, has a zero tolerance attitude towards drink driving and any employee found driving with alcohol in their bloodstream above the legal maximum level will be subject to the Company disciplinary procedure.

Employees must never drive after having taken any illegal drugs either as, apart from breaking the law, the presence of illegal drugs in the bloodstream will impair judgment and increase the chances of being involved in an accident.  The Company has a zero tolerance attitude towards driving under the influence of illegal drugs and any employee found driving with illegal drugs in his/her bloodstream would be subject to the Company disciplinary procedure.

The use of certain prescription and ‘over-the-counter’ medicines, such as certain flu remedies and hay fever medicines, can cause drowsiness and impair the ability to drive.  It is the employee’s responsibility to read and understand the instructions on any medication taken and should not drive if there are warnings against this.  Often there are alternative medications that treat the symptoms but do not cause drowsiness, and employees should choose these instead if they need to drive.  If in any doubt about the effects a medicine may have, employees should consult their GP or a pharmacist.

Fatigue

Drivers are reminded that driver fatigue is a serious problem resulting in many thousands of road accidents each year.  Sleepiness reduces reaction times, which is a critical element to safe driving.  It also reduces vigilance, alertness and concentration so that the ability to perform attention-based activities is impaired.  The speed at which information is processed is also reduced by sleepiness.  The quality of decision-making may also be affected.

The early hours of the morning and the middle of the afternoon are the peak times for fatigue related accidents.  Sleep related accidents tend to be more severe, possibly because of speeds involved and because the driver is unable to take avoiding action in time.  Stress can also be a factor in fatigue related road accidents.  Stress can be described as mental overload caused by extreme emotions such as anger and frustration.  Stress results in fatigue, which can lead to reduced levels of attention & judgment and is therefore an important contributor to road accidents.

Tyres, Petrol, Oil, Windscreen

ALD’s employees are instructed to inspect regularly oil, fuel levels, windscreen wipers, water jets and bulbs, tyre pressure and tread and replaced as necessary.  In addition, these checks should be carried out prior to a long journey.  Also, before winter arrives, top up with anti-freeze if necessary.  The driver is made responsible for cost of fixing vehicle if damaged through negligence i.e. if runs out of oil etc

Safety Audit

All ALD company car drivers are invited to attend a short workshop to cover the checking of the following on their vehicle:

  • Oil Levels
  • Water Levels
  • Tyre pressure
  • Tread Depth

A safety kit is also provided within all cars and it is the drivers responsibility to ensure it is transferred to their new company car as they receive it. 

Route planning

Scheduling journey times is very important and, if done in the right way, will help to reduce the risk of accidents.  The number, times and order of appointments/visits can have a big effect on the risks faced by the employee and should be carefully monitored by management.  It is not safe to assume that an employee is capable of implementing a safe and effective schedule each day and some training may be required.

Schedules should be made so that the employee is not expected to start their journey before 6.00am and also, where possible, to avoid peak period traffic flow.  Similarly, journeys should not end too late in the day, and the day should not be excessively long, otherwise fatigue will set in and the risk of being involved in an accident increases.

Drivers should note that driving between midnight and 6.00am presents a greater risk, as these hours are deemed as the body’s natural sleep hours.  Similarly more sleep related accidents occur between 2pm and 4pm.  Therefore driving at these times should be avoided or minimised where possible.

Managers are also required to ensure that company car drivers are not setting themselves unrealistic targets for their appointments which will prevent an increase in time pressure on the employees.

Before commencing a road journey, drivers should consider their route and where possible always chose the safest routes.  Motorways in the UK are one of the safest routes in Europe and should be used. 

Also, before commencing a long road journey, drivers should consider either an alternative method of transport or combining a road journey with other methods, for example, air or train.

Managers and Company car drivers should ensure that regular breaks are also scheduled.  This is important if driving long distances, so reducing the possibility of fatigue. 

Mobile Phone Use

Legislation has been in place since 2003 that bans the use of any hand held devices whilst driving as research has proved that the use of mobile telephones, whether hand-held or hands free, increases the risk of a driver being involved in a fatal or very serious accident by a factor of four.

In 2007, the government introduced new penalties with regard to the use of a hand – held mobile phone and this led to an internal review of ALD’s policy with regard to the allowed use of mobile phones in company vehicles.  Subsequently, a total ban on the use of any mobile phone and / or hands free devices whilst driving a company vehicle was implemented and communicated to all staff.

The Company advocates that should a driver need to use their phone whilst in the car, they should ensure that they are stationary with the engine switched off, BEFORE using the phone. 

Satellite Navigation Systems

Whilst ALD Automotive does not provide Satellite Navigation Systems to employees the following guidelines apply to individual’s choosing to use them on business journeys:

Plan the journey and programme the system in advance of the journey.
Check that the route is safe/suitable for the type of vehicle before setting off.
Find a method of using the sat nav that is not distracting, e.g. by using any spoken instruction software instead of relying on a screen.
Never try to programme the system while driving.  Always pull over in a safe place.
So as to keep safe, always make the same road observations as you would if the system were not fitted.

Motor Accident Monitoring

ALD’s Accident Management team inform Business Services of any new incident that occur to ensure an individual Accident Investigation is carried out where necessary and the following control measures have been agreed:

Allocated company car drivers who are involved in incidents will be asked to carry out and successfully complete in-car driver coaching where they have:

  • 3 or more driver fault or unknown fault accidents
  • 4 or more accidents including the above or which are Unknown third party fault.

Post crash interviews are carried out with all individuals involved in Road Traffic Accidents and, where appropriate, they may be required to complete additional driver training; an employee refusing to complete driver training is unable to drive any ALD Automotive vehicle.

Driver responsibilities

In addition to the responsibilities described throughout ALD’s car policy, there are some specific responsibilities that drivers must also adhere to:

Check the safe operation of the vehicle prior to use.

  • Ensure that driver and passengers are all wearing seat belts including rear seat belts.
  • Charges and fines relating to speeding, parking and congestion, must be paid for by the driver
  • Report to their Manager and Human Resources all formal cautions and impending prosecutions resulting from their driving, whether on Company business or not, or in a non-Company vehicle.
  • Never use a mobile phone whilst driving.  
  • Drive in a safe and lawful manner at all times.  The speed limit for any particular road should not be exceeded and it is a maximum limit, not a target.
  • Do not drive at any time whilst mental judgment and / or physical ability are impaired by illness, the use of alcohol, drugs, medicine, or if tired.
  • Report all incidents, however minor using the standard Company Motor Accident Report Form’
  • Consider travelling times and distances when booking meetings / appointments / conferences etc.
  • Do not put anyone at any undue personal risk at any time
  • Ensure that loading of the vehicle, including maximum weight is in accordance with manufacturer’s recommendations.
  • If the driver considers their vehicle to be unsafe they should immediately contact the Maintenance Department immediately or follow the breakdown advice contained in the vehicle handbook.
  • Carry safety equipment at all times.

Line Managers additionally have the responsibility to:

  • Periodically monitor and review the suitability and acceptability of their staff to drive on Company business, and to drive a Company vehicle.
  • Give consideration to the driving records of prospective employees.
  • Monitor vehicle incidents involving their staff, whether there is injury or not.
  • Monitor travelling times and distances of staff when booking meetings / appointments / conferences etc.

Specific Examples of Procedures

In accordance with our policies and our procedures detailed above, all drivers are individually considered and appropriate actions taken in order to minimise this risk.

We follow a regular programme of risk assessment and dependant on the outcome suitable interventions will be carried out including:-

  • Personal in-car coaching (usually incorporating Econo-driving training)
  • Classroom training & assessments
  • Individual guidance

Our priority is to ensure that each driver is treated individually based on their risk and their individual situation and needs. 

Our risk policy incorporates the following ongoing assessment and monitoring of all employees exposed to work related road risk, and we have specific processes incorporating all the below aspects most of which are described earlier in this document:-

  • Online driver Risk Assessment
  • Regular Driver Health assessments
  • Clearly defined Car policy
  • Automated Driving License validation direct with the DVLA
  • Monitoring of employees accidents
  • In-house work related risk matrix to provide transparency on individual driver risk
  • Regular monitoring.
  • Individual guidance and training as required
  • Formal Accident Management process
  • In addition our WRRR policy covers all essential aspects of this subject, giving guidance on the risks and guidance on how to counter this;  along with a number of specific policies with regard to the management of WRRR; for example

All company car drivers are required to comply fully with our risk assessment processes and to follow through on any training or advice given.

Driver responsibilities with regard to WRRR are clearly defined and clear procedures to be followed in each event are laid down. Additional advice is given to any special groups ie pregnant ladies, lone travelers etc  where necessary. 

All our procedures are regularly reviewed in line with ISO9001:2008 requirements and new procedures are developed and communicated to all relevant staff as necessary.

Auditing and Review

ALD sets targets and monitors progress against our risk matrix and takes appropriate action as necessary. This is formally reviewed every quarter and audited as part of our quality management procedures to ensure consistency of support and evidence of clear risk management

Performance Measures

As part of our standard risk management strategy we monitor all affected individuals against our own in-house risk matrix.  This gives us transparency on the individual driver risk.  We measure and monitor this against a number of key performance indicators, incorporating:-

  • Age
  • License status
  • Driver health assessment
  • Accidents
  • Annual mileage
  • Seminars/Training attended or carried out
  • Driving tuition attended
  • Results of FDRI Risk assessment
  • Individual guidance and training as required
  • Formal Accident Management process

Accident Reduction

Whilst, historically, ALD’s occupational road risk exposure has been very low - the most common incidents being related to parking and manoeuvring – we are mindful of the fact that this has only been achieved by adopting a rigorous risk management programme and that this must be continued if we are to maintain this record.

We continually endeavour to maintain awareness of our work related road risk policy across the business and that, together with regular training over the last 5 years, has lead to a reduction in our accident rate from 64% to 39%.  In 2009 whilst 40% of our accidents were identified as at fault accidents, over 50% of these were minor parking and manoeuvring accidents.  So whilst we have seen an overall reduction in our company accident rate, clearly we have further work to do to improve on this.   

The policy we have adopted provides assurance that our monitoring and reporting systems are effective and are making a difference to our work related road risk, especially when benchmarked across UK business in general. 

Financial and Other Benefits

Please see above.

Lessons Learned  

As a result of our experience both internally and through the provision of DriveSafe to our customers we are acutely aware of the ever present dangers involved in work-related driving and that we must be vigilant and rigorous in our application of our occupational road risk policy and that this must be continually updated in line with new research and legislation. Whilst our accident rate is low we have experienced incidents both internally and externally which highlight vividly that policy must be followed if we are to avoid a serious injury or fatality in the future.

Current and Future Developments

ALD’s DriveSafe programme is a unique solution within the fleet industry and has proven itself effective to both corporate customers and within the business itself. Our objective, therefore, is to ensure it evolves as best practice develops and seek to improve risk reduction wherever possible.

We meet regularly with our suppliers to identify current risks and to develop new initiatives and the key objectives remain to:

  • Safeguard our employees
  • Safeguard our business
  • Safeguard our future

< Back to list of case studies